It is an old Manosphere throwaway that most mainstream dating advice is useless, and in particular is useless because most of it centers around how you are supposed to make the other person feel, instead of advising you on how to effectively induce the desired feelings. The result is a set of imperative statements that are nonetheless content-free:
“Don’t be creepy.”
We’ve advised men to ignore this kind of stuff as useless at best and harmful at worst.
But that’s not the whole story. There’s a kernel of truth to these things. However, in their initial form, they are not useful. A man can’t just jump out of bed and decide he’s going to be himself that day, or that today’s the day he’s going to act less creepy.
What you need to do is translate these statements into behaviors or traits that you can actually improve on. To do this, you need to recognize the feeling or frame they are communicating, and then turn them into goals that are achievable.
“Cultivate a sense of authenticity.”
“Cultivate an air of mystery.”
“Hone your fitness and your wardrobe.”
“Escalate with boldness.”
People may say I’m just recycling the bullshit with new words. For me, however, the second set of statements carries much more actionable power by citing behavioral improvements for yourself instead of platitudinal imperatives that focus on the feelings you’re creating in others. The next time you hear bullshit advice, consider whether it can be converted into something useful in this manner. Not all advice is shit-testy subterfuge; sometimes people really are trying to help but just can’t communicate it in a way that actually helps the recipient.